Businesses operate by planning and executing a series of never-ending projects, though we may not always see it that way.
Everything from running a successful marketing campaign, to taking over a rival company, is essentially a project that requires the same rules to be followed.
So here are 10 steps that will help you to manage projects that run smoothly and deliver the goods.
Most people have some opinions on what makes a good leader. High on the list in one form or another are “resolve” and “vision” – but these are pretty nebulous terms. How are aspiring leaders meant to achieve these qualities?
Neither quality guarantees success, and if a leader suffers setbacks, changes track or fails to provide the leadership they strive to, then that “resolve” and “vision” become harder to maintain. (more…)
The only thing you can be certain of in business is that things will change. This might be a slow change or a sudden sharp one, but either way, it’s important to prepare for the future.
These changes are a lot easier to predict if you are the instigator of the change. You may decide to take on a partner, move location, change the way you sell, change what you sell, or even sell the business itself. (more…)
Long term planning is an oft-ignored aspect of running a business. Why is it so ignored? Because people think…
- It’s not useful.
- It’s not possible.
In this article, I’m going to explain why long term planning is both useful and possible, and also provide some practical advice about how far ahead you can look when devising your long term plan. (more…)
Every start-up company needs a good business plan and an effective business strategy. They’re distinct but equally necessary and you shouldn’t confuse one with the other.
You can’t expect to get past first base without a plan. A clear, well-written explanation of what you intend to sell and when you intend to sell it, is the document you will take to your bank manager if you want to get a business loan and to investors if you’re seeking financial backing. (more…)
In a previous article, I described the differences between short term and long term planning. A challenge to both types of planning is how much detail to go into.
I’ve seen accountants trying to create perfect 30 year financial models based on the level of detail they use for tracking the day to day running of the business.
Needless to say, they quickly find an already large job turning into a mountain of work. When the time comes to update the plan (1-12 times/year depending on the organisation) the battle to ensure accurate detail in the plan needs to be taken up again.
So how do you get the right level of planning for your business? (more…)
Thinking about your business in different ways affects how you plan for the future, opening up some new avenues, but making others potentially harder.
By being aware of how you view your business you’ll also invent new ways of thinking about it, which will give you a more balanced and flexible approach to financial planning. Robin Booth of Brixx.com explains how to think differently about your business, and the benefits of doing so; (more…)
Planning ahead is important. It helps you to understand where you want to get to and how you’re going to get there.
However, financial planning can be a bit of a mystery for many small business owners. So to help demystify it, we asked Robin Booth of Brixx.com to answer the questions business owners often ask about financial planning;
When you are launching a new business, it’s fair to say that planning your finances isn’t the most exciting aspect of of being a startup. However, it is a crucial part of understanding whether your business has a chance of succeeding
And the good news is that there are now dedicated software, tools and apps that can quickly and easily produce financial forecasts for you.
So to help you understand more about how planning your finances can help your startup succeed, we asked Robin Booth of Brixx.com to share his experience with us;
So you’re in charge: perhaps you started the company, maybe you’ve taken it over, or you were handed the top job and told to run the show. What next?
Every company is different. But while scale of the demands placed on the chief executive of a listed multinational may be different to those a small business owner faces, many of the major challenges business leaders face are similar.
After discussing such challenges with a wide range of entrepreneurs, investors, executives and analysts, I suggest they boil down to eight essential “acts” of leadership. (more…)
Restructuring a business can be a turbulent time; you may be juggling legal issues with disgruntled employees, expansion plans with uncertain investors or faced with frustrated customers.
However, that isn’t a world away from the day-to-day nature of running a business, and you shouldn’t feel unnecessarily daunted just because you’re moving in a new direction.
There’s more to direct marketing than mailshots. Get creative!
Direct marketing is simply a message that speaks directly with your customer. Used well, direct marketing can be a cost-effective and well-targeted method of getting your message across.
With all the excitement of starting and running your own business, it’s easy to overlook what might happen if it all goes wrong.
A disaster could strike your business at any time, in any form. What if your main sales person was lured to an aggressive competitor, you lost your data, or your building was destroyed in an accident? It’s rare, but it happens.
Here are seven simple steps to a writing a simple but powerful disaster recovery plan: